Day Three – Onward!

Image Source:  www.pathtonature.com
Image Source: http://www.pathtonature.com

It’s day three with my new Artiste HUD, and my enthusiasm hasn’t waned yet.  🙂  So, I contacted Yummy to see if she could troubleshoot why I couldn’t get the palette to work with the HUD.

(Side note here – I don’t intend to explain all the ins and outs of using the HUD in these posts.  There are simply sooo many things you can do, that it would be silly to think I could cover them all.

If you’re really interested in the possibilities, take a jog over to Yummy’s blog and check out all the demo videos she’s made about things you can do with the Performer’s Series of products.  Also, some of the things I talk about may not make sense to you unless you own the products. 😛 )

When you use the HUD, you use it to play your dance sequence (obviously).  However, with the Artiste, there are two different ways to play your sequence.  You can do it via the *autofx notecard, but in looking through the documentation, it states NOT to use that method if you want the sequence to play immediately (which I did).  So the other method is to play the sequence via the *config nc in the HUD.

After trying both methods, I got the palette to work, but there was a weird delay.  My sequence started playing immediately, but I didn’t start moving immediately.  (This is where having expectations based on previous experiences can sometimes cause issues.)  As Yummy and I were talking, trying to figure out the problem, she realized it was the events.

Doh!

I totally spaced looking at my events.

Events are central to the way the Artiste HUD works.  You tell the HUD how many events you want (up to 22 events) for your routine.  Events can be based on things like – a change in tempo in the music, a place where you want to remove or add clothing (or objects), a time when you want a special effect to fire, etc.  Because I had been so focused on learning the palette, I had ignored events.

The HUD comes with several examples already set up for you in the various notecards – so that you can ‘wear and go.’  The *events notecard has three or four events listed, including the timing (duration) of each event.  Events need to be at least 2 seconds long.  Which normally wouldn’t be an issue, except that I had my first palette move set to begin at 0.2 seconds.  So when I pressed play on the HUD, I would start dancing immediately, but the palette wouldn’t get the command to move for at least 2 seconds.

Leave it to me to make things difficult!  If I had started out my palette/mover onstage, the 2 second delay would probably never have been an issue.  However, since I am in the habit of rezzing my movers backstage and then having them jump onstage when I start a routine, it was.  So – how to fix it?

We came up with several solutions.  One – I could just change my mover route to begin onstage, and then my first move wouldn’t happen until about 7 seconds into the routine.  Two – I could add 2 seconds to the beginning animation of the sequence.  However, that throws the whole sequence off, and I didn’t want to have to redo all the choreography.  Three – Yummy realized I could add a command line directly into my sequence (in the *sequence notecard) to trigger the palette to move.

So I did that and success!  The palette began moving immediately, the same as my sequence.  So, I can continue starting the movers backstage with this method.  Which I probably will, because it’s become a habit.  Then I can have dancers sit on the movers and cache the animations while someone else is onstage.  It helps cut down on the time you need between acts.

As I continued to work with the palette route (which included ‘pauses’ at various points), I was having trouble.  If I stopped the routine before it completed, the palette seemed to get confused.  Pressing GoHome didn’t always work, and neither did GoToStart.  Even resetting the palette didn’t seem to help.  After contacting Yummy and asking some questions, she thought perhaps the ‘pause’ feature would just confuse people.  I didn’t think so, and I wanted to be able to use that feature.

Then I realized that since I had put the move command in the sequence notecard, I no longer needed that command line in the *autofx notecard in the HUD.  So I was essentially issuing two different commands to the palette – no wonder it was confused.  So I took the command line out of the *autofx notecard and boom!  The palette mover worked perfectly. 🙂

At this point, I decided to make a mover route using the controller method.  (Why?  Glutton for punishment, I suppose.  I want to really learn the use of the Artiste products, so that I can get the most out of them in performances.  The more I know, the more I can do!).

The controller method probably has a more familiar feel to it, as it is similar to other mover systems.  There are a few minor differences, but setting up the route went pretty quickly.  The biggest difference I noticed is in the turns (something I mentioned briefly in my Day Two post).  With other systems, your avatar turns immediately and faces the direction of your move.  With the Artiste, it’s more of a gradual turn, so it can look a little odd, depending on how your route is laid out.  However, with the ability to add in specific turns, this is easily adjusted.

So yay!  Another day of successes (with a few issues), so I am ready to move on.  For day four, I am planning to try adding turns and rotations into a mover route, adding emotes, and perhaps, if I am feeling ambitious, trying out a couple of special effects!

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